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Old 03-28-2006, 06:16 PM   #23
Charles Cunningham
Dojo: University of Iowa Aikikai, Iowa City, IA
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 15
Re: Beginners Retention Rates

At a recent demo, one of our senior instructors spent several minutes explaining to a large group of prospective students just how difficult and frustrating aikido is. He showed them how much easier it is to simply hit uke than to blend and do an aikido technique. He said it takes most people more than 5 years to learn to do a nikyo right. Then he told them how few students are still practicing after 6 months, after a year, after 3 years, after 5 years, etc. He painted a fairly bleak picture of aikido. "Hmm," I thought, "Interesting choice. Give 'em the ol' weed-out speech."

I seriously doubted that any of these prospective students would return to try a regular class. It surprised the hell out of me to see about a dozen of them (the majority) come back and stick with aikido for several months now.

Shows you how much I know...

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